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  #491  
Old 08-19-2012, 05:44 AM
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AnnabelMore AnnabelMore is offline
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Davis and I had a super rough conversation the night before last. Basically, it went like this, over the course of an hour or so after we'd gone to bed:

Him: You don't seem happy, is something wrong?
Me: I'm very happy sometimes when I'm with you, but other times I'm really not. I don't know what to do about it.
Him: I'm not happy very often, but you make me happy.
Me: Maybe you should get better at making yourself happy?
Him: You don't want me, this sucks. ;_;
Me: I need to be free to figure out what's best for me, but I don't feel like I truly am because I'm afraid you'll hurt yourself if I leave ;_; ;_; ;_; [gross sobbing]
Him: Ohmygosh, I'm so sorry, I didn't mean to make you feel trapped. I can hardly say I'd be fine if you left, but I wouldn't hurt myself.
Me: .....ok.
Him: What now?
Me: I don't know. I'm here right now. Let's go to sleep.

The next evening: Great sex and cuddles, feelings of closeness and possessiveness.

Confusing. :[

*

The other day, in the car, I found myself thinking about my feelings for Eric, and the ongoing, minor background annoyance of not ever having told him how I feel. I wondered, for the millionth time, if I should talk to him about it, and I imagined how it might go.

Then I said to myself "Hey. It's not a secret. You haven't acted like it's a secret, you've never hidden it, even if you've never said it out loud. You feel it, so you act on it to the extent you can while respecting his desire not to date. Why does there need to be more, why does there need to be some awkward proclamation? If you ever feel like it's really the right moment -- which it never has so far, but let's say it does some day -- or if you just absolutely need to go for it, then fine, do it, say it. Because it's not a secret. From this moment on, I'm letting go of the illusion that it's ever been a secret."

It felt freeing, and overdue, even if it didn't actually change anything about the situation.

Then, the next day, Gia and I had a long talk online. I told her about my difficult conversation with Davis (as detailed above) and she gave me good advice about needing to accept him as he is if he and I are going to stay together.

She talked about feeling guilty about not having enough time to give to me or Eric, and how sometimes this makes her pull away from us more, and how she knows this is counterproductive and is trying to change it. She theorized that her excitement about Dexter came in part from a complete lack of expectations and guilt, and how this showed her all the more that she needs to let go of expectations/guilt in order to make the most of her time with the two partners she already has. Without going into detail, I told her a little bit about how hard it had been for me to see her excitement over him. It was good to get that off my chest.

Then I mentioned my lingering angst over not speaking to Eric about my feelings for him. I also explained that, at the same time, I'm not even sure whether being in love with him is "real" or if it's sort of an artifact of physical intimacy and of thinking of the three of them as family (I actually finally said that I think of them as family!!). "But hey," I said, "it's not like I've been hiding it, it's gotta be obvious, right?" She said that he's "not unaware" of how I feel, and that he has "no problem with it" while also having "no desire to develop it". Huh. She said that she didn't like trying to express his feelings on his behalf, but at the same time knew that he was very unlikely to choose to express them himself.

Funny timing. Here I'd finally told myself that it wasn't a secret, only to have it confirmed that, indeed, it's not. It makes me feel better, to know that if I DO say something, he won't be surprised or unhappy. At the same time, I feel so exposed, it feels so unbalanced for me to feel this way and for him to merely accept it. And yet I'm so grateful to him for just accepting it and being cool about it. I *hate* the way it aches sometimes when I look at him. And yet I'm so glad just to be in their lives, him included, I dislike the idea of loving Gia separately from loving the rest of her life and the family she's built, which is the only way I could concretely divorce myself from this stupid unrequited silliness.

Confusing. :[ :[

So much unpacked in that one conversation! I might still ask her exactly how she knows that Eric knows that I feel for him as more than a friend (did she bring it up? did he? so curious!), or I might leave it be.

I've really gotta try to process less and try to just *be* more...
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Me, 30ish bi female, been doing solo poly for roughly 5 years. Gia, Clay, and Pike, my partners. Davis, ex/friend/"it's complicated." Eric, Gia's husband. Bee, Gia and Eric's toddler.

Last edited by AnnabelMore; 08-19-2012 at 05:47 AM.
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  #492  
Old 08-20-2012, 01:53 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AnnabelMore View Post
I've really gotta try to process less and try to just *be* more...
Ahh... respectfully, I agree. You really put yourself through the wringer sometimes!

I wanted to tell you to relax and enjoy what life brings you every day without always thinking you need to stir the pot. Make sense?
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  #493  
Old 08-22-2012, 06:20 PM
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Relaxation, enjoyment, acceptance... yep, definitely things to strive for. I've been feeling it the last few days, at least. Chill about Davis, planning a mini-getaway for his birthday next month. Chill about Gia, drafted an email on scheduling a date and also a time to get dinner with my parents (something we discussed last year but which never actually happened due to scheduling issues), gonna wait to send it until things quiet down a little ( August had been a *very* busy month for both of us. Chill about Eric, I watched Bee last night and beforehand had a fun conversation with him and Gia about various stuff we're into, just friendly and amiable, and today he and I have been chatting online about nothing of consequence.

Chill, happy to have the things I have, to be loved and wanted and respected.
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  #494  
Old 08-27-2012, 06:06 AM
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E, T, B and I spent this weekend with some old friends (and some other friends of theirs, some of whom we knew and some we didn't) at a big house on the beach that they had rented in celebration of their return from overseas. We all cooked and drank and talked and played board games and just relaxed. It was a *wonderful* time, although of course I managed to find little ways to torment myself here and there.

Tidbits:

- Our friends gave us the master suite, with the only king-sized bed, since, while another couple there also had a baby, we had three adults and thus needed the most space (poly perks!). Gia eyed the bed and made a comment about not being sure if we'd all fit, and I spent part of the first evening wrapped up in my head, trying to decide if I'd be able to handle it if she/they ended up deciding that they needed more space and asked me to relocate to an air mattress or the futon upstairs.

It didn't come to that -- we all fit just fine and slept well. Gia had a cold, and wanted to sleep on one end of the bed, where she could easily reach tissues. Bee sleeps between her and Eric, so my spot ended up being on the other end of the bed, next to Eric. His lower leg was pressed against mine as we were falling asleep, and it felt so warm and nice. He reached out once and gave my calf a quick caress. I squeezed his leg in return.

As we were laying there, a number of things happened, some nice and some less nice. For instance, Gia asked me to do an important favor for her, which made me feel good, but then another friend came and laid down beside her, which made me jealous because I wanted to be doing that. When I woke up, it took me a moment to understand that everything after the caress from Eric had been a series of dreams.

- At one point, a friend brought up a hobby that she wants to pursue. It's a hobby that Gia used to be very into, and Gia eagerly said that she thought she could spare a Saturday a month to work on it with our friend. I said nothing, but inside I was indignant -- how could she not be ready to commit to a monthly date night with me, yet be sitting there setting up a monthly hobby day with this friend??? I took a walk to cool off (and also because the view was gorgeous), and I reminded myself "Gia deeply values meaningful activities that enrich her life. She pours energy and time into them, far, far more than she ever hangs out with anyone *just* to hang out. If you want to get more dyad time with her, just suggest an activity that she'll find worthwhile and that you and she can share, like yoga or a class or a monthly play party. This is just how she works, it's not like she was trying to make time with that particular friend *before* the hobby was brought up."

- I've noticed this before, and after this trip I'm positive it's a real pattern -- Eric, more than anyone else, notices if I start to say something but get cut off and don't continue, or sometimes even if I just make a small sounds or gesture that indicates that I might have something to say but then don't say it. In both cases, he'll ask me if I had something to say. More than once it's helped me express myself, since my instinct normally isn't to plow forward if I'm not feeling listened to or if I'm hesitant about something I want to say. I really appreciate this tiny way that he supports me and shows that he's aware and paying attention to me. Maybe it's something he does for all his friends and I just haven't noticed, I don't know, but, regardless, it's special to me.

- The master suite also came with a large jacuzzi tub. About halfway through the first day, Gia mentioned to me that she thought she might take a bath. She then sighed and said that she might even like to take one with Eric, if it weren't for needing to watch Bee. I scoffed and told her that she absolutely should do just that, because I'd be more than happy to watch Bee. She took me up on it, and I chatted with our friends while minding the boy. About a half an hour later, Eric came down, clearly having just dried off, and told me that Gia wanted to know if I would scrub her back for her. You can probably guess that I didn't have to deliberate over my answer. He took over watching Bee.

Gia had told me once before that she loves being intimate in bathtubs. Her anxiety and her difficulty in letting people close just slip away in the water. I'd never before taken advantage of this fact, and was delighted at the opportunity.

I stopped and laughed in the doorway when I saw that the tub was piled HIGH with bubbles -- they'd found some bubble bath, and the jacuzzi jets had taken the situation to a fairly absurd level. Gia was gorgeous, wet and smiling and welcoming, in her element. I slid in with her and began rubbing her with a washcloth. Suffice to say, incredibly sexy things happened, including D/s, orgasms for each of us, and a scrumptious side dish of sexual humiliation when one of our friends walked in halfway through and smacked me on the ass while I was laying on my stomach across Gia's lap.

Afterwards, Gia told me that she's determined to make more room for me, for us, for this, in her life. She told me that I'm "a blessing." All of it was incredibly gratifying to hear. I was just blissed out.

Things have been so *good* lately, in contrast to how much trouble I was having last month. I am still working hard to be chill and calm, but it feels like I'm getting a lot more in return lately, like the inputs of energy are matching my outputs of energy in a way that is actually sustainable.

Bee was incredibly adorable the entire trip, especially when interacting with the other baby, but that's a given.
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Me, 30ish bi female, been doing solo poly for roughly 5 years. Gia, Clay, and Pike, my partners. Davis, ex/friend/"it's complicated." Eric, Gia's husband. Bee, Gia and Eric's toddler.

Last edited by AnnabelMore; 08-27-2012 at 06:09 AM.
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  #495  
Old 08-28-2012, 05:44 PM
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I used to really like posting with advice on the Poly Relationships section of the boards. I still check it sometimes, but I find that, for whatever reason, I almost never have the emotional energy to write anything these days. I just find it too depressing. I'm so glad to be involved with people who are fair-minded, kind, and genuinely interested in my well-being. I may not get everything I want right when I want it, but I know that my partners and my metamour seriously consider my best interests along with their own and try to do right by everyone involved. It sucks that so many people don't seem to have that.
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  #496  
Old 08-28-2012, 07:45 PM
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Totally know what you are talking about, isn't it sad? I never was that actively giving advice anyway, but I seldom find the time and energy to even read most of the new posts. I have had this "I don't know where all this drama comes from" realization some months ago and felt quite out of place for not having severe problems while exploring our relationships. Still hoping to read some happy stories from time to time.
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  #497  
Old 08-28-2012, 08:48 PM
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I'm with you there Annabel. While I enjoy the shared experience of this forum, sometimes I just don't have the time or energy to contribute. I also don't want to rub it in people's faces that things are going well for me when they are struggling.
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  #498  
Old 08-29-2012, 02:50 AM
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Still thinking about our awesome weekend. There was this one moment when we were all eating fresh-caught blue crabs and Gia carefully, carefully slid the bones and cartilage and gunk and such away from the inner meat, somehow managing to keep all the meat connected in one big chunk. I've been eating crabs all my life and I've *never* done that. Then she handed it to me like a flower. Later, on the ride home, we stopped into a grocery store to grab some snacks and she bought three mini-cartons of ice cream, one for each of us. Being fed is one of those things that just makes me feel so cared for.

Their nanny had to cancel at the very last minute this week, and might not be able to work for them in the future, so they're in a bit of a mad scramble at the moment. I took off work on Monday to be with Bee. At one point I had to stop by a farm, and he got to meet some animals, which he really enjoyed. On the ride back, as he made soft noises in the car seat, I felt so warmly pleased to have given him a new experience. I felt like having him as a part of my life gives everything a new layer of meaning. I thought about maybe trying, just trying, to work 10-hour days for a few weeks, to see if I can hack it. If I can, and if my boss is still amenable to the idea, I could take one weekday off per week to be with him. I honestly don't know if I could sustain that, I *hate* getting up early. Still, I ought to at least try. Even if I didn't always end up watching him, it'd be amazing to have an extra day to take classes or do chores or relax.
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  #499  
Old 08-30-2012, 02:13 AM
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Gia and I worked out some things today, via chat and email. It was very tense at times, there were parts where my hands shook as I typed and I felt adrenaline-y and weird.

A very basic summary:

Her: Wanna go to this class? It'd be a really cute date!

Me: Totally! But let's not count it towards our "every other month dates" goal unless we're also, like, getting dinner or just hanging or whatnot.

Her: Why not? I think it'd still be a date.

Me: ......
...........
How am I supposed to feel valued in this relationship when you don't want to make any time to just *be* with me, you only want to hang if we're also doing some other hobby or activity? How is it any different than you just making time to be with other friends?

Her: It's different because it's *you*. Because of my anxiety, it's actually much easier for me to be relaxed with someone if there's another context besides just social interaction, such as an activity we're doing together. I picked this particular activity because I thought you'd enjoy it and find it romantic, it's not something I'd bother to make time for with anyone else.

Me: Agh, crap, I'm sorry, that actually is thoughtful and romantic. I've just been feeling crazy lately, jealous and insecure in ways I'm not used to. It's been almost two years since you got pregnant and we weren't able to be as close, and I've been fine most of that time, but lately I'm less fine and I don't know why.

Her: I feel like I've been giving this relationship my all these last 6 months, and I don't know that I have anything more to give. It scares me that I've laid out a schedule that I know I can handle, and you're still feeling like it's not enough. I can try to give more, but I just have so little energy and time. On top of everything, my relationship with Eric is super strained, and now this is just so upsetting and frustrating.

Me: It's like, now that the intimacy we'd been missing is finally returning, I'm suddenly unable to avoid the knowledge of how much I miss it. I think it'll get better. It really helps to understand more about how your anxiety shapes the choices you make about what you want to do together, thank you for clarifying that. I'm sorry for upsetting you, I know that you're trying and that things are just hard right now. I wish I could help more.

Both of us: We're going to be ok. It's good that we trust each other enough to hear the hard things.

Ergh, so stressful but so important to hash this stuff out...
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  #500  
Old 08-30-2012, 03:32 AM
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SNeacail SNeacail is offline
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Originally Posted by AnnabelMore View Post
It really helps to understand more about how your anxiety shapes the choices you make about what you want to do together, thank you for clarifying that.
I find this is essential. My husband tries to shield me from his stresses, but that one fuels my insecurities because I can tell there's something off, but am just left to guess. Knowing some of the thought processes makes the world of difference.
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